Mr. Kossi Messan Ewovor, Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Republic of Togo, chaired the Session.
The pan-African ownership of the Center has increased particularly in the period since 2007 during which six countries from Central, Eastern and Northern Africa joined the Center. As a result, the number of Africa Rice Center member countries went up from 17 in 2006 to 23 in 2009.
The Council urged that the unique model of the Africa Rice Center as a pan-African intergovernmental institution be taken into consideration in the context of the ongoing CGIAR reform process, because it is an important asset for the CGIAR. The Council also called for a “Mega-Program on Rice” in the new CGIAR as rice is the fastest growing food staple in Africa and is an engine of economic growth and political stability that can impact on poverty and hunger.